“Jingle bells jingle bells jingle all the way..” oh track change! “Gabrielinte darshana saaphalyame..” Yeah! Now you’re tuned to the Christmas vibe of Kerala! Christmas moments have always been that ‘adichpoli’ finale to all our years. And we are all pining for a little Christmas in our lives right now. As a kid growing into an adult, one of the things that have never changed is the feel Christmas time brings. The merriness is already there. You just need to drink it all in! This is an ‘ethinottam’ into some of the Christmas moments we’ve all had!
Christmas tree and stars all around!
There is no Christmas without the bling! The way the streets get decked up with huge Christmas trees and lighted up stars in every household is a feast for the eyes. Christmas is a season where there is never a problem with ‘too many lights!’ Many of us have a miniature Xmas tree that we decorate with little foil balls and ribbons and not to forget the fake gift boxes made of thermocol! Our favourite shops and malls are all decorated in full glory and we go around clicking pictures next to the huge Santa cutout because a Christmas selfie is mandatory! Just the feel of it all gives us such merriness and we feel warm and fuzzy inside out!
Christmas carols and Santa Claus!
There is no fun without the music and dance that goes with Christmas. Christmas carols with a huge choir team and orchestra have been enjoyed by all of us. And if you have studied in a convent school, you know what we mean when we say “Christmas carols and feels”. And not to forget the Christmas carol celebrations that dance their way into our homes! With ear-deafening music and crazy dancing, Santa and his boys are always awaited with great longing. Balloons, chocolates, a half-witted Santa with his equally crazy dance steps and energy that we can never match, and some ‘bucket pirivu’ are indispensable parts of every Christmas in Kerala.
Setting up the Christmas crib!
It took us a while to understand that we cannot randomly keep the figurines where it pleased us. If you have spent Christmas holidays with a family who celebrates Christmas in all glory, then you have witnessed how meticulously they place the porcelain figures in the correct positions. After we see how it is done the right way once, we are bound to never forget the Nativity scene. Such is the love put into the assembly, right from building the little barn to placing ‘unniyeshu’ on the bed of straw.
Christmas feasts are nothing short of a food fair! You dash to your friend’s place just to feast on the Palappam and Mutton stew to the duck roast and kappa biriyani and then trudge back home as full as can be! Most of us even try our hand at winemaking because there is no Christmas without wine! And not to forget, icing cakes and rich plum cakes. During this season we have no doubts about what to give our hosts when we visit a relative’s house or a friend’s house – it has to be cake!
School/College Christmas celebrations
Christmas was a whole different story on campuses. The whole Christmas affair would start way early with the formation of a Christmas committee that decides what programs are to be conducted this year along with who gets to become the ‘Christmas Pappa’ this year! This was also the time when we were on the last lap of our examinations and we couldn’t keep still when we heard the jingling of bells and the occasional “Ho Ho!” coming round the corner! We would be more interested in identifying who Santa was than in the brand of chocolates he jovially threw around! Santa would mostly be a senior and we wouldn’t waste an opportunity to comment on what a ‘daaridryam pidicha’ Santa they were. Imagine the horror when we realised that our ‘Kanakku maashu’ or PT sir was the Santa that year!
Ticket bookings and homecomings!
For those who have been staying at hostels, Christmas was the time to get back home on whatever seat of whichever bus/train that was left unbooked. Those gang bookings and end of semester feel clubbed with the happiness of going back home were worth living for! It was also the time when kids would have their Christmas breaks and the whole family gears up for an ‘adipoli’ trip that they have been planning since forever!
There’s no growing up without having played this at least once in our lifetimes! From picking chits to see whose name we got, the excitement of it all would also be to try and pry into seeing who got our name! And of course, there was this rule that the name we got should never be revealed to anyone. But what are friends doing if they aren’t breaking rules anyway?! (Hehe!) The excitement of making Christmas cards and handcrafted gifts bring out the creative giant sleeping in us all this while.
No matter what we have all been through this year, Christmas and its special moments have already brought a smile to our faces and warmth to our hearts. Christmas time and season’s greetings mean different forms of happiness to each of us. For some of us, it is the time where we celebrate with our friends far away from home. Some of us visit our grandparent’s house and go back home as fat as a goose after the Christmas holidays. Wherever we are or whoever we are with, Christmas is always celebrated with the spirit it stands for. This year, however, let us not forget to maintain some social distancing while celebrating special Christmas moments, safe and snug in the comforts of our home!
What are your Christmas plans for the year? Do let us know in the comments below!